On editing Juiced.GS and Open Apple

Filed under Musings;

As I spent this weekend writing and editing both Juiced.GS and Open Apple, it occurred to me how different the processes are.

When I write for Juiced.GS, I edit as I go: words are substituted, sentences experimented with, entire paragraphs moved or scrapped. By the time I finish my first draft, it’s often very close to a final draft.

But with Open Apple, there’s no going back. Once I click “Record” on the computer, the first take attains as much permanency as the second and third, with no distinction between garbage and eloquence. It’s more akin to brainstorming, where we just keep talking to get the ideas down to be sifted through later. There’s an editing process, for sure, but it’s entirely distinct from the content production phase.

But then I thought, isn’t that similar to the relationship between writers and editors? Writers may edit as they go, but their work isn’t truly edited until it’s fallen under the scalpel of a separate editor who prepares it for publication. In recording an episode of Open Apple, I’m more akin to a writer who then submits his work to an editor. Everything that doesn’t fit the vision of the final product is sloughed at a later date and time.

It’s a challenging distinction, but that’s how I like it. I’ve enjoyed every stage of Open Apple production because it’s so new to me. My first professional experience with audio editing came as the post-production editor for the now-defunct Computerworld Editorial podcast, which opened with one of the same songs heard in Open Apple. The Apple II podcast marks the first time I’ve also participated in outlining and then producing the content. Being involved in a project from beginning to end is the best way to learn what goes into a finished piece and what parts are enjoyable, as I discovered when I became editor and then publisher of Juiced.GS.

I feel right now like I’m at the same point of educational experimentation with Open Apple that I was six years ago with Juiced.GS. Neither will ever be perfect, and both provide unique and ample opportunities to innovate — but Open Apple‘s learning curve is currently much steeper, and I couldn’t be happier.

  1. Martin Haye says:

    Fascinating distinction. Even as a writer, I often rearrange and massage before submitting to the editor. The process of recording audio and then paring down seems quite different.

    Does this mean there’s another Open Apple podcast coming soon? I loved the last one. I even knew the game sound but forgot to submit my contest entry.

    Oh, and the little out-takes after the end of the show… priceless!

  2. Martin: the June episode was released today — see the first link in the above blog post. Thanks for listening!